A married Texas police chief was arrested Thursday for allegedly faking an annulment document to trick his mistress into believing they would soon be wed. When she tried to verify the document, she went viral and discovered he was dating yet another woman who was not his wife.
After a series of twists fit for a soap opera, former Stinnett chief of police Jason Collier, a 41-year-old ordained minister who is married with four children, is charged with tampering with a government document with the intent to defraud, a felony, according to local station KAMR.
The Stinnett city government had placed him on administrative leave Wednesday, and his resignation followed shortly after, according to multiple posts on Facebook by city authorities. He has bonded out of jail.
Public Safety Sgt. Cindy Barkley said in a statement, “Collier allegedly sent a text message to the victim with a fraudulent government record attached. The document was a fraudulent marriage annulment.” According to Collier’s previous employer, the Borger Police Department, he is also an ordained minister.
The saga began when an Amarillo woman named Cecily Steinmetz who said she was Collier’s mistress posted about her purported engagement on Facebook on Tuesday. The post prompted Kristi Shaffer, another woman who said she was involved with Collier, to come forward and reveal the chief had proposed to her as well. Collier’s own Facebook page has since disappeared.
Steinmetz wrote on Facebook, “Chief Jason Collier is leading a double/triple life. I was his girlfriend until yesterday. He lied to me and presented me with fake annulment documents when I found out he was married. I also found out about a 2nd girlfriend, Kristi, last night. He lied to us, our children, and asked us both to marry him.”
She said he would visit her in Amarillo while on the clock as a police officer. To convince her that they were indeed about to be married, the police chief sent Steinmetz a picture of an annulment via Instagram, according to a screenshot. When she checked with the 108th District Court, where Collier claimed he had filed it, the court had no record.
Steinmetz told KAMR, “He was like, ‘Well, you know, I’ll get you the annulment,’ and he’s like, ‘Just hold on.’ I was like, ‘Okay, you know, let me see it then,’ and he sent that to me. And I told him, I said, ‘Well, I’m not going to take this at face value.”
Speaking to KAMR, 108th District judge Doug Woodburn said, “No match exists either under that name or cause number. Our cause numbers are completely different… My court is followed by the letter E. It’s a fake.”